Metwally Ali Metwally Ali

Writing a formal letter
Upper Intermediate Level level


In this lesson Ss learn about how to write a formal letter. The lesson starts with a listening task about an advertisement for the BrainBoost Course. This followed by a formal written letter and three exercises concerning the grammar and the vocabulary which are better to be used in formal letters. Finally, there is a controlled written activity relating to p. 139.


Abc handouts
Abc audio

Main Aims

  • To provide process writing practice of a formal letter in a context of a complaint and to produce and raise the students awareness of writing a formal phrases.

Subsidiary Aims

  • Listening to specific and detailed information through a complaint telephone call.


Warm up (4-5 minutes) • To introduce the lesson and elicit from the students the differentiation between an informal letter and a formal one.

Engage Ss by asking the differences between a formal and an informal letter.Elicit answers from the Ss.

Listening for specific detail (10-12 minutes) • to practise listening for specific detail

Focus Ss on the advertisements on pg. 46. Ask Ss if they have seen similar advertisements before if they have tried similar methods. Set the questions and play the recording. Put students in pairs to compare and check answers as a whole class.

presentation (8-10 minutes) • To raise the students' awareness of writing phrases.

- Put Ss in pairs and introduce the character and set the question. Ex.2 pg. 46. Tell Ss that the sentences are what philip says not writes. Check answers as a class. - Put Ss into pairs to underline the words / phrases he uses ex.3a and discuss the question in b. - Put Ss into pairs and ask them to do ex. 3c. Monitor and help if necessary. Hand out the answers for Ss to check.

Vocabulary (6-7 minutes) • To introduce some new phrases and raise the students' awareness of phrases.

Give the students a few minutes to find the phrases in ex. 4, pg. 46. Elicit some examples and write them on the board. Check that the students understand the phrases.

Controlled Practice (10-11 minutes) • To practise writing a complaint formal letter focusing on the phrases and the format.

Photocopy and hand out pg. 139 to the students. Get them to choose one of the languages. Put the students in pairs to think of four things that went wrong, and then elicit examples and write them on the board . Using the ideas on the board or their own ideas Ss write the letter. If time allows, Ss will write in class and then i will exchange letters among Ss for them to see each other's letters. If time is short, I will set it as homework.

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